John Martin

laughing through grad school
(academic stuff) (hints of life beyond
school and work)
(Flying Moose videos, photos, stories, etc.) (observations)

Making Something

My focus in Spring 2005 has been to explore the possibility of a design-based research project for my dissertation. What I think I've settled on is using some sort of Augmented Reality game, that I present in the video presentation Body Games 1, and more rhythmically in Body Games 2.

There are four of us that formed a group around the Augmented Reality Games, using a new version of MIT's River City Editor game engine that they used to create Environmental Detectives. Because our interests went invarious directoins, and because there wasn't a whole lot to do while we waited for the new game engine to be released, we each worked on our own variation of a game, meeting to discuss capabilities and the progress on the game engine. Mingfong Jan is working on a game that helps teach the history of Madison's Greenbush Neighborhood. Jim Mathews is building an interesting game that puts the user on the UW - Madison campus during Dow Day in October 1967 . Mark Stone delved into a needs analysis to use the game engine as a virual tour guide for the University (much like Miguel Campoy Ederra's thesis project).

I decided to try to meld together the simple-tech aspects of camping and hiking at FML with the high-tech aspects of this game engine, and to do so while keeping as much of the rich history of the place as possible. For my inspiration, I used a previous camp director's narrative of his experience as a camper, counselor and director at FML -- specifically, I refer to this excerpt on The Mystery Trip. If you're interested in my work, I strongly recommend that you read it, as it does a great job of capturing the romance and magic of Flying Moose Lodge that has enthralled me since 1993.

It all ended quite badly, or rather, it hasn't yet ended. I discuss the adventure in my final paper.